Sri Lanka team named for Olympics

Sri Lanka team named for Olympics

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Team Sri Lanka for the London Games. The team captain is not in the picture as he is overseas training.The National Olympics Committee today announced the final team to represent Sri Lanka at the London Olympics which begins later this month.According to the media unit of the National Olympics Committee, badminton player Niluka Karunaratne will captain the Sri Lanka team while senior vice president Deva Henry will be the Chef de Mission. Others in the Sri Lanka team are Heshan Unamboowe, Reshika Udugampola Anuradha Cooray, Christine Merrill, Thilini Jayasinghe and Mangala Samarakoon. Athletics: Shooting: Heshan Unamboowe, Men’s 100m BackstrokeReshika Udugampola, Women’s 100m FreestyleHeshan is the recipient of an Olympic Solidarity Scholarship, awarded by the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka, allowing him the chance to train at the Nunawading Swimming Club in Melbourne, Australia. He was also selected as the male athlete from Sri Lanka for the Asian Swimming Talent Identification Project organized by the Olympic Council of Asia, providing further training opportunities in Bangkok. Reshika has also been provided with the rare opportunity to train abroad, and she has been spending time in Melbourne as well, working hard leading up to the Games.For individual qualification to the Olympic Games, at least one of the FINA Bureau established Standard Entry Times must be achieved. These include either an Olympic Qualifying A-Time (OQT) or the easier FINA/Olympic Selection B-Time (OST). Universality places are a secondary chance for qualification awarded to Olympic Committees whose athletes have shown a high performance competency and achieved the minimum requirements. Both Heshan and Reshika’s performances at the 14th FINA World Championships led them to an invite by FINA to compete at the Olympic Games on universality places.Preparations for the London Games are well on track and it looks like this Olympiad is going to be one to remember. The National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka would like to offer official congratulations to the Sri Lanka Olympic Team on their achievements. Profiles of some of the team members: Anuradha will be competing in Marathon, one of three road events in the Athletics competition (the other events include the 20km Race Walk and the 50km Race Walk). The marathon distance is 26.2 miles, or 42.4 km, and is a grueling race throughout the streets of London, ending near Buckingham Palace in central London. The event will take place on 12th August.This will be Anuradha’s 2nd Olympic performance, as he previously competed at the 2004 Games in the marathon event as well. He is one of two athletes on this year’s Sri Lankan team who has achieved qualification standards for 2012 (B-Standard Qualification Time). Every Olympic Committee may enter one athlete for each event on the athletes program if he/she has achieved the A or B-standard. Anuradha was able to secure his 2012 berth this way. Niluka Karunaratne, Men’s SinglesNiluka will compete in the Men’s Singles as one of the 38 athletes in this event. The men’s singles event will take place at Wembley Arena, starting on 1st August 2012 in its preliminary stage: rounds of 16. Each player will play everyone else in their group and the winners will qualify for the knockout stage of the competition. This will whittle down to a final taking place on 5th August.In addition to Anuradha Inrajith Cooray, Niluka is the only other Sri Lankan athlete to have achieved qualifying standards for London 2012. The Badminton World Federation ranking list is used to determine qualification. Niluka competed in various events and obtained a cumulative world ranking of 47th place. This ultimately led him to qualify for a prized position at the Olympic Games. Anuradha Indrajith Cooray, Men’s Marathon Swimming: Mangala Samarakoon, Men’s 50m Rifle ProneOlympic shooting falls into three disciplines: rifle, pistol, and shotgun. Mangala will represent Sri Lanka in the 50m Rifle Prone event, which means he will aim at a 10-ring target from 50m away, while in a lying down position. This event will take palace on 3rd August.Only athletes who have attained the Minimum Qualification Score (MQS) can be entered in an event on the Olympic shooting program. As per every sport, there is a specific quota of athletes for the Olympic Games. There are cases in which quota places are not used, in which case they can be re-allocated. This can happen in three ways: an unused quota place by the International Federation, the Host Country, or a Tripartite Commission Place. These spots are re-distributed to the National Olympic Committees with the largest number of MQS athletes that have not yet qualified for a quota place for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka was awarded a re-allocated quota place by the International Shooting Sport Federation, and as a top shooter in this country, Samarakoon secured the Olympic berth. London 2012 will feature 36 different sports, of which 4 will include athletes from Sri Lanka. Those sports are: Athletics, Badminton, Shooting, and Swimming. Badminton:

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Walls Tabbed as 17th Annual Division I FCS ADA Scholar-Athlete of the Year

first_imgDivision I FCS ADA Academic Scholar-Athlete of the Year Release CLEVELAND, Ohio – Already having accumulated a plethora of academic honors in his four years a Lumberjack football player, recently graduated Stephen F. Austin safety Marlon Walls can add another prestigious award to his name. Walls has been chosen as one of two recipients of the 17th Division I Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association (FCS ADA) Scholar-Athlete of the Year accolade, the organization announced Wednesday morning. The plaudit comes on the heels of Walls gaining several major national recognitions following the 2017 season. As FCS Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Walls will receive a $5,000 postgraduate scholarship during the Association’s annual Awards Luncheon, held in conjunction with the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) Convention at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in Washington, D.C., June 28-30. Walls and University of San Diego nickelback Max Michaels were selected from a group of nine FCS ADA Academic All-Star Team finalists. 2018: Marlon Walls, Defensive Back2017: Marlon Walls, Defensive Back2014: Ryne Chambers, Offensive Lineman2012: Drew Nelson, Punter2011: Drew Nelson, Punter2008: Cory Long, Kicker About the FCS ADA: Now in its 24th year, the FCS ADA’s mission is to enhance FCS football. For more information on the FCS ADA, please visit www.fcsada.com. The FCS ADA is administered by NACDA, which is in its 53rd year. For more information on NACDA and the 17 professional associations that fall under its umbrella, please visit www.nacda.com. “First of all, it’s a great honor to have received recognition, after-the-fact, for my undergraduate work both on and off the field,” said Walls. “With this scholarship, I will be able to focus all of my time into my research and classes without the potential of a financial burden along the way. In doing so, I will be able to gain an advantage early on within my research group and concentrate on grasping the material in my graduate level courses. In all, I’ll be better equipped to succeed as a grad student and, more importantly, in my profession.” A native of Pearland, Texas (Pearland H.S.), Walls was the Southland’s pick as a 2017 STATS FCS Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete Award finalist. The safety is also a three-time CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team selection and was a nominee for both the 2016 and 2017 Allstate/American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Good Works Team. Placed on the Southland’s All-Academic Team the past three seasons, Walls was a member of the Southland fall commissioner’s honor roll each year since his freshman campaign in 2014. Named to the SFA President’s List every semester of his career, he was the recipient of the SFA physics department’s Brian Patrick Hanson Memorial Scholarship last year and claimed the Murray Shaw Award for owning the highest GPA of any Lumberjack football player. The only Lumberjack to ever earn College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-America® of the Year honors, Walls was tabbed an Academic All-American® First Team selection for the second-straight year in 2017. He became just the third student-athlete in the history of the Southland to attain the title of CoSIDA Academic All-American® of the Year since the inception of the plaudit in 1987 and is the first SFA football player in program history to be named Academic All-American® First Team. In claiming the national honor, which includes both FCS and FBS football student-athletes, Walls joined an illustrious fraternity of Academic All-Americans® of the Year with some of the most notable names in the sport. Previous CoSIDA Academic All-America® of the Year selections include Danny Wuerffel (Florida, 1995 & 1996), Peyton Manning (Tennessee, 1997), Drew Brees (Purdue, 2000), Alex Smith (Utah, 2004), Tim Tebow (Florida, 2008 & 2009) and Andrew Luck (Stanford, 2011). SFA’s first William V. Campbell Trophy® finalist and National Football Foundation (NFF) National Scholar-Athlete, Walls’ accomplishments were highlighted in front of one of the most powerful audiences in all of sports this past December at the 2017 NFF & College Hall of Fame Annual Awards Dinner in downtown New York City. The prestigious Campbell Trophy® is regarded as the highest scholar-athlete honor in all of college football and the academic equivalent to the Heisman Trophy. With SFA already having a Walter Payton Award winner in former quarterback Jeremy Moses (2010), the ‘Jacks became just the sixth football program in the nation to have both a Walter Payton Award winner and a NFF National Scholar-Athlete. Of those, only five schools have had both a Walter Payton Award winner and a Campbell Trophy® finalist since the Campbell Trophy® began in 1990.center_img Last summer Walls completed an internship at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. While there, he joined other students from institutions such as MIT, Stanford and Yale to assist with the Europa Propulsion Module, a NASA space probe joint project. Walls returned to Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in January and is gaining more work experience before pursuing a graduate degree in mechanical engineering this fall. A special Review Committee of FCS athletics directors were tasked with selecting the all-star team and scholarship finalists. Completing this task were Thorr Bjorn, Rhode Island (chair); Bruce McCutcheon, Lafayette; Bill Smith, Bryant; and Nathan Pine, Holy Cross. Football players from all FCS institutions are eligible for the award. Each of the nominees were required to have a minimum grade point average of 3.20 (on a 4.00 scale) in undergraduate study and have been a starter or key player with legitimate athletics credentials. They must have reached their second year of athletics and academic standing at the nominated institution and have completed a minimum of one full academic year at the nominated institution. They must also have participated in 50 percent of the games played at his designated position. SFA’s FCS ADA Academic All-Star Recipients On the gridiron, Walls recorded 60 tackles, including 31 solo stops and two tackles for loss, while playing in all 11 games and making 10 starts this season. He registered a career-high 11 total tackles versus 17th-ranked Nicholls on Nov. 11 and posted nine tackles in two other outings. Walls also claimed three pass breakups, a quarterback hurry and a fumble recovery throughout the year. No Lumberjack on SFA’s current roster played in (46) or started (24) more games than Walls did throughout his four-year career in the purple and white. For the second consecutive year, Walls earned a spot on the FCS ADA Academic All-Star Team in January and was one of just four Southland Conference football players to appear on the 49-man list. In December, Walls attained his bachelor’s degree after posting an unblemished 4.00 grade point average while majoring in engineering physics and minoring in mathematics. A two-time Southland Conference Football Student-Athlete of the Year, Walls completed his undergraduate degree in three and a half years of study in Nacogdoches.last_img

Warriors’ finals charge personal to Foran

first_imgIn Foran’s absence the Warriors recorded their third win in their past four matches against the Bulldogs last Friday and are now preparing to face the in-form Sea Eagles in Perth sitting just two points outside the Telstra Premiership top eight.A quadriceps injury that he sustained in Round 14 is not expected to stop Foran from lining up against his former team who have moved into fourth position on the back of four straight wins, their latest a convincing victory over defending premiers Cronulla.The Warriors have featured in eight matches in Perth since 1996 and have incredibly never recorded a win despite enjoying a healthy proportion of the local support.Foran’s likely return will help to somewhat offset the loss of hooker Issac Luke who suffered a dislocated shoulder against the Bulldogs with the Kiwi five-eighth determined to continue the progress the team has made in the last month.Having issued Foran a career lifeline when personal issues forced him to stand down from playing with the Eels last year, the Warriors were devastated when it was announced the 26-year-old would be joining the Bulldogs in 2018 but he insists that he wants to leave on a good note.”Every year you want to do well but this year means a lot to me personally,” Foran told NRL.com.”The Warriors reached out to me when I was in a struggling time in my life and it means a lot for me to be able to play some of my best footy and really give back to the fans and the club.”They’ve been great to me over in New Zealand. The people of New Zealand have really supported me.”Besides last year when the Titans squeezed into September football with 27 points, 28 has been the magic number for teams to qualify for the top eight, leaving the Warriors the task of winning at least five of their last nine games to play finals for the first time since 2011 when Foran’s Sea Eagles defeated them in the grand final.Only four of those nine matches are against teams currently in the top eight but sneaking into the top eight with the strength of their roster is not enough according to Foran.In 10 games this season the Warriors have run out with the New Zealand spine from the mid-year Test and been victorious five times and Foran knows they can’t let the opportunity available to them slip through their fingers.”It doesn’t guarantee that you’re going to be successful just because you’ve got a great roster but it certainly helps having the quality of players that we do have,” Foran admitted.”It’s just about as a team putting in those 80-minute performances.”It’s been a little bit frustrating, not being able to find that consistency week in, week out because we know we’re a better football team than what we’ve showed.”If we get it right and we do put together an 80-minute performance we can win games of footy.”We believe that we can achieve something this year and we’re going to leave no stone unturned to try and do that.”We’ve got to keep winning. If we want to make something of this year we’ve got to keep getting the two points. It’s not going to get any easier but the belief is strong.”As a club we want to make sure we can give this thing a really good crack this year.”Obviously that’s something for me personally that would be great to have a successful year but I just think as a team and the big picture, we really want to try and do something this year.”Whilst Warriors teams of the past have been guilty of allowing mistakes to overshadow talent, the 2017 squad under Stephen Kearney boast the best completion rate (78.95 per cent) in the competition through 16 rounds.Yet Friday’s win over the Bulldogs was just the second time this year they have won back-to-back games, Foran admitting their failings have been difficult to pinpoint.”It’s not that we make errors and put ourselves under pressure because our completion rates have been superb all year,” said Foran.”Normally when you’re putting yourself under pressure and you’re letting tries in it’s because you’re making errors and not completing but we’ve been doing that.”That’s been the hard thing for us, pinpointing what causes those lapses. I think at times we just switch off and don’t keep our minds on the job and we leak one try and another try follows and before you know it you’ve let in two or three tries just because one or two of us have switched off.”That’s the key for us moving forward, being stronger in those tough moments but for the full 80 minutes.” Photo by: Dave Lintott/ NRL Photos (Kieran Foran is determined to give back to the Warriors in his only season at the club).last_img

Fijian Drua drop to 4th after heavy loss in Canberra

first_imgPhoto: Supplied/Australian Rugby Union The Fijian Drua found the ball hard to hold on to against the Canberra Vikings. The Drua had arrived in the nation’s capital top of the table after four rounds but the only categories they dominated on Friday night were turnovers conceded and missed tackles.Vikings winger Andy Muirhead scored the opening try in the fourth minute of the match and from there the home side never relinquished their lead, running in ten tries to one.Coach Tim Sampson admitted he was surprised at just how well it went.”It’s a dream, you certainly hope so,” he said of the way the game played out.”But there were things that we focused on during the week when coming up against the Drua and thankfully tonight they did come off.”That’s credit to the players stood out there to execute what we practised during the week.”Despite losing their previous two matches, Sampson felt the team’s performances had been positive and hoped Friday’s result will give the squad “that little bit of extra belief” in how they can play.”We’ve been reasonably happy with how we’re going, especially with our defence, so in attack what was a big focus for us this week and that washolding onto the ball and starving Fiji of possession, which we did quite well,” he said.Queensland Country are the new competition leaders, after thumping Melbourne Rising 54-12, while the top four teams, including Canberra, Perth and the Drua, all have 15 points and are only separted by points differential.All nine teams have managed at least one win in the first five rounds and Tim Sampson believed anyone can beat anyone.The Drua are on the road again this weekend, away to the Greater Sydney Rams.last_img

Genia guides Rebels to huge win

first_imgGenia’s masterclass was a cruel reminder for Reds fans that the star halfback no longer plies his trade at Ballymore but Queensland have far bigger concerns on their plate, with a suspension hanging over new skipper Scott Higginbotham’s head.Higginbotham was shown a red card for a high shoulder charge on Matt Philip in the 10th minute, putting his side on the back foot from the outset.By the letter of the law the decision to send Higginbotham for a particularly early shower may have been the right one as his shoulder did make direct contact with Philip’s head but Higginbotham argued his case that the Rebels lock was falling, with the no. 8 unable to wrap his arms around in the tackle.A suspension would have followed regardless of the colour of the card, but that it was a red ultimately proved game-defining.The Reds hung tough in the  20 minutes that followed and actually crossed for a serendipitous first try through Duncan Paia’aua but it was largely downhill from there.The Rebels, in contrast, took 10 minutes to shake the early nerves but under the guidance of Genia, looked a far more settled side than what was expected, given seven of their starting XV weren’t in Melbourne this time last year.Sefa Naivalu nabbed a first-half double – he collected a suspect Lopeti Timani pass adjudged to be flat before Jack Maddocks threw a crisp cutout to set up the flying Fijian’s second – but it was the playmaking hand of Genia that will have put smiles on Rebels fans’ faces.It was his initiative that created two tries inside six minutes before the half-time siren sounded, sending Tom English over after the forward pack won a penalty against a six-man Reds scrum feed before drawing two men and putting Dane Haylett-Petty over for his first of the night.That sent Melbourne into the sheds up 26-14 and things were well and truly one-way traffic from there.Brad Thorn has preached defence all preseason but there was none of it to be seen when Jack Debreczeni glided over from short range just two minutes into the second term, leaving the Reds staring at a 19-point deficit.The lacklustre defence was followed by a lazy pass from Paia’aua to gift Haylett-Petty a double, the Rebels fullback plucking a flashy no-look pass and racing away to score untouched from 70 out.The 56th minute arrived and Genia’s number was called but not before he set up Debreczeni’s second, Eto Nabuli offering a lazy tackle attempt as the flyhalf trotted over.Feauai-Sautia scored a deserved consolation try with 15 to play but it was too little, too late.The Rebels were mighty impressive in a performance that broke plenty of records, with their highest score ever and the first game in which they have scored more than six tries.Genia and Debreczeni looked as though they had been playing together for years, the forward pack dominated the battle of the gain line and the lineout wreaked havoc with Queensland’s ball.That creates a solid foundation to work with from this point forward but the caveat to all of that is that they only faced 14 men for the majority of the match, making this performance a fair bit harder to gauge.The Reds have an obvious excuse in being a player short for almost 70 minutes but there were some soft tries leaked in the second half and Thorn will have that in his sights come Monday.last_img

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